Palos Verdes Peninsula
The Palos Verdes Peninsula rises 1,450 feet above the South Bay of Los Angeles County. It's an oasis of greenery in a Los Angeles region dominated by concrete and asphalt; it features horse trails, a lighthouse, ocean cliffs, tidepools, Eucalyptus trees,and nature walks. The Palos Verdes Peninsula is made up of four cities:
The Palos Verdes Peninsula was originally part of enormous ranchos owned by Dominguez and Sepulveda. "Palos Verdes" is a Spanish phrase that roughly means "green stalks" or "green wood". A New York investment syndicate led by banker Frank Vanderlip bought the entire Peninsula sight unseen from George Bixby reportedly for $1.5 to $2 million (the price of a single average home today). Development began in the Malaga Cove area in the 1920s. Vanderlip hired the famous Olmsted Brothers landscape architecture firm (sons of Frederick Law Olmsted, designer of Manhattan's Central Park), to help design and plan the communities. To this day all of the Palos Verdes towns have very strong architecture and development committees that tightly regulate building. The cities' collective efforts have been exceptionally effective in preserving open space and avoiding over-development.
Sightseeing in Palos Verdes truly requires driving. The drive along Palos Verdes Drive is one of the finest drives in the United States and tops the list of things to do. Palos Verdes Drive West and South are the highlights, a seaside "yellow brick road" that traces the cliffs, overlooking the Pacific Ocean and Catalina Island. The "center" of Palos Verdes consists of several upscale residential neighborhoods (only a few of which are gated), and while beautiful, are not exactly a tourist destination.
Palos Verdes Peninsula Unified School District
The Palos Verdes Peninsula Unified School District serves the four Peninsula cities and the unincorporated areas of the Palos Verdes Peninsula. Student enrollment is approximately 11,500 students. The school district's reputation for having a high quality education system attracts many families to this suburban area and its schools. Students attend two early childhood centers, ten elementary schools, three 6-8 intermediate schools, two comprehensive high schools and one continuation school. PVPUSD schools continue to be recognized for outstanding achievement at the local, state and national level. Community and parent volunteers make significant contributions to the public schools. The Peninsula Education Foundation has been successful in raising local funds to meet and supplement classroom needs. Strong PTA programs support and enrich school delivery systems.